For Starters, tell us something about you not found in your official bio or on your website. I'm a geek, I really am! I LOVE Star Wars, I'm a FANatic. I have posters all over my walls, I own over 20 Star Wars related tee's, I stand out all night just to get tickets to events! And to top it off, I have my own shop on Etsy named; Cheeky Wookie, where I custom design and paint STAR WARS shoes!
What made you want to be an actress?My mom says it's all the attention and who am I to argue? I began dancing at 2 and by the time I was 8, I was competing all over the country. From there, I moved onto theater, commercial print and movies. I love the fact that on Tuesday you could be playing a cheerleader and on Saturday a serial killer!
Who are some of your influences and favorite actors and actresses? Katherine Hepburn has had a huge influence on me. Considering the testosterone centered era in Hollywood at the time, when women were mainly trophies on a mans arm; Hepburn was able to hold her own and carry any scene; her presence demanded that she be noticed. I admire that. For a more modern day heroine, Helen Miren by far, I just love to watch her work. She is so versatile; from comedies to dramas to even staring in her own crime series. Her longevity alone is remarkable.
What acting methods and styles have you studied? To be honest, my mom has been the best acting coach that I've come across. When she was younger, she wrote and acted for many years. Let's just say she has her own techniques that seem to be working! I also enjoy learning from other actors while on set.
What is your dream role? I actually have two, the first would be a comedy that would showcase the lighter quirky side of my personality. The other would be an action/adventure film, like Indiana Jones, Pirates of the Caribbean or The Hunger Games. I guess I just want to be challenged and swing from something while yielding a weapon.
Who in the industry would you most like to work with? Let's see, gee, so many...Helen Miren, Keira Knightly and oh yes, Ewan McGregor!
Which do you prefer stage or film? And why? Tricky question, especially since I began my career in theater. They both are so unique that sometimes I question whether they should be in the same category. Theater is so intense; playing in front of a live audience night after night is a rush, as well as having that instant gratification, of course there is the downfall of making a fool or youself in front of hundreds of people and having to continue. While with film, when a mistake is made, you can just have a do over! I'm going to say THEATER, and YES , that is my final answer.
Who plays you in the story of your life?Well at 17, I haven't had too much of a life yet, so the story might end up being a short, but I would love to see Emma Stone play me. Her name just popped into my head, so I'm going with it.
How much preparation on average do you put into character development? It really depends on the depth of the character. I just recently was cast in a feature where I play a teen who lives with her uncle and is being sexually abused. Since I have nothing to pull from in my own life experiences, I have been volunteering at a women's shelter here in Orlando, Fl and getting to know women and children who have lived through this type of pain. It's been a life changing experience.
What type of directors do you prefer to work with? I prefer a director who is passionate about the project and can guide me to not only to see his vision but mine as well.
What genre or films do you prefer to appear in? Comedies, but I never get cast for them and believe me, I'm funny! It's so tough to fight the whole "type cast" thing. They see my resume, look at me and think; "oh she'd make a great cheerleader or class president", come on people, I have comic timing, try me! Actually, B.F.F. does have a bit of dark humor to it that I enjoyed (hope you do too)
If you could appear in a remake of any film, what would it be? If Keira Knightly would stop remaking everything I'd really like to take a shot at the classics. My favorite character is actually Jane Eyre. I know, I know, it's been remade so many times but they have yet to see my portrayal.
How have you grown as an actress since you appeared in the series Walk on Water? Walk on Water dealt with a very limited scope of subjects that mainly appealed to the Christian based audience that enjoyed it. I really felt restricted by how my character could truly react to certain circumstances and wasn't secure enough with my skills to speak out. I feel far more confident now when speaking with directors about my character and how I feel they should be portrayed.
What was it like working with director Chris Greene? No comment, hahaha. No seriously, I first worked with Chris 3 years ago on a horror film, Blood Moon ,but genuinely got to know him better as a director on the series La Fleur de Mai. Of any director I’ve worked with, Chris has been able to pull emotion out of me that I didn’t know I was capable of. He is passionate about every project he works on and it shows.
Of your body of work so far what are you most proud of and which would you like a do over for, if any?I am most proud of B.F.F. It has the coolest and most unique concept I’ve read thus far and it allowed me to work outside of my comfort zone. As for do overs, it's all about the experience and what you've taken away from it, good or bad!
In your opinion can acting be taught or learned, or does it come naturally? I may get a lot of flak about this one but I truly believe that with acting you either have it or you don’t. Of course you can study methods and pick up tips along the way but in my heart I believe that you’re really born with the skill or you’re not.
While reading your bio, Jane Austin and Emily Bronte are listed as favorites of yours. Which other authors do you admire? Well recently I have been reading books written by Patricia Cornwall. I love her writing style immensely as well as her commitment to deeply researching whatever subject she is writing about. Her Dr. Scarpetta series is fascinating and so intricate that I actually feel immersed in the characters lives as well as having a better understanding of the subject material. Her character development is at a level that is more complete than half the people I know.
I want to stick with literature for a moment because the site interview is being posted to cater heavily to writers. What great works of literature would you like to bring to life on the screen or stage? Gee, what hasn't been done already? Seems to me we have raped the great writers of every beautiful word that has been put to page and most poorly! Although I have a deep fervor for the classics, I stand behind my feeling that I don't want to see anymore of them brought anywhere. Some written words were never meant to be brought to stage and especially screen. As horrible as that sounds coming from an actress. Many pieces of great literature remain great because through reading, we as the reader are able to experience the writers work as we ourselves envision it, not by how others interpret it.
In regards to character development, which do you prefer, films or series? My personal preference would be a series because in my experience, writers have allowed my character to develop over many seasons and I have been able to grow right along with it.
Where is Raven in the next 5 years?Well right now I’m primarily focused on college and plan to study pre-law and go into a life of politics. I'm leaning towards entertainment law because I will be able bring my experience as an actor to the table and having that slight edge will come in handy. Of course I’d like to continue acting, but my main focus will be college unless Martin Scorsese calls, then all bets are off!
What’s up next for you and what can we see you in next? Next up for me in early 2013 is season 2 of La Fleur de Mai where my character Philomena Welch will be dealing with some intense issues. Also in early 2013 I will be starring in Hells Little Angles, written by Cyndi Crotts and produced by Traveling Brat Productions. I will be playing the younger version of the character, Raven, and am really looking forward to my first "Grind House" like film.